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NWW Weekly Connection

September 24, 2023
Lessons from a Banyan Tree in Maui

Our beloved Tree Friends gloriously rise up from Mother Earth and provide us with beauty, inspiration, food, shelter, shade and joy.

One tree that is in the news this month is a 150-year-old Lahaina banyan tree in Maui. After being singed during the August 8th wildfires that devastated much of the West Maui community of Lahaina, there was fear that the beloved tree would not survive.

Have you ever been “singed” by events in your life and wondered if you’d ever recover? Looking back, what/who helped you to survive and then thrive?

Here’s what the people of Maui did: they formed what they call a hui (partnership) of arborists, landscapers and volunteers to lovingly tend the singed tree by dousing her with hundreds of gallons of water and monitoring her progress.

One of the volunteers said, "We are seeing good results and as long as we give [her] enough love, I think [she’s] going to be fine.”

Banyans are massive tree-like plants (that we call trees, but they’re actually plants!), unique in that their aerial roots, which descend from the branches and take root in the ground, turn the tree into a living colony. The root systems have been know to expand out over two miles!

It’s said that Buddha found Enlightenment sitting under a banyan tree for seven days.

What “colony” of relationships have you created in your life? And who’s sprinkling the trunk and roots of your banyan tree, if she gets singed?

Many women who are a part of the New World Women sisterhood have come to realize that their colony of loving connection is right there for them. And if they get singed by the fires of life that occur from time to time, their sisters are there to douse their roots with the waters of love so they can survive and thrive. It’s a ready-made community of like-hearted sisters.

And when the fire is over and the new growth replaces the scorched brown trunks and roots, together, they celebrate the viridescence (the state of being green) of their new lives.

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